China

Hotels in China

For decades, hotels in China outside of Hong Kong could be rough going. Today, however, Beijing and Shanghai are home to some of the best hotels in China and secondary cities are seeing a boom in hotel growth as well. The Peninsula, which had been a reliable Beijing mainstay, raised the bar along with many other China hotels a decade ago. Its 2004 renovation brought some pizzazz to the 525 rooms, now outfitted with all the latest tech amenities. The Pudong Shangri-La exemplifies the energy of Shanghai today, with 952 rooms in the soaring modernist twin towers. It got the official seal of approval as one of Yin Mao's favorite hotels in China when he tied the knot here in 2007.  

Beyond the country's popular urban centers of Beijing and Shanghai, it's hard to keep up with the five-star hotels and resorts with hundreds of rooms as well as smaller more quirky properties that are opening. The 47-room Amanyfayun, near Hangzhou, is designed like a Chinese village surrounded by fields of tea.

Set on 21 floors of the Pacific Place Towers skyscraper, with larger-than-average guest rooms; downstairs is the posh Pacific Place Mall.

It’s not easy to stand apart in Shanghai’s booming hotel scene, which is why Waldorf Astoria pulled out all the stops for its China debut.

Lijiang, a UNESCO World Heritage Site known as the Venice of Asia for its centuries-old network of canals and bridges, sits in a forested nook of mountainous Yunnan province. The Banyan Tree resort is as picturesque as its location.

The property boasts 61 villas lining the shore.

Although it’s only a few hours from the city, this villa hotel near the Great Wall feels a world away. This peaceful eco-ranch in the Huairou Mountains offers ten villas for rent, each decorated with the tastes of Manchuria, China, and Tibet.

372 spacious, wood-accented rooms. Tech amenities include smart phones with free instant messaging and a lobby bar filled with Macs and PC's.

Housed in a pair of blue-glass towers, the Shanghai JC Mandarin hotel is located in the Nanjing Road shopping district, just across the street from Plaza 66. Inside the lobby, a five-story mural of Admiral Zheng Ho—a 14th-century seafarer—is surrounded by gold-foiled images of the sun and sea.

The exterior of this Dongcheng neighborhood boutique has a lattice pattern. When lit up at night, it resembles a giant lantern, one of the traditional Chinese elements that are strongly represented in the design of this 89-room hotel.

The infinity pool on the terrace of the new $12,468-a-night Presidential Suite at the InterContinental appears to share water with Victoria Harbour.

A 26-story property in the heart of China’s busiest metropolis doesn’t normally bring to mind tranquillity, but PuLi’s black tile-floored lobby offers instant serenity—as do the 229 rooms and suites in gray Shanghainese brick and tables topped with slate-colored inkstone.

Over-the-top opulence reigns at this vaunted, century-old hotel—which is, appropriately, closer than any other to Beijing’s singularly grand Forbidden City.